|On Friday last the scholars of the above schools had their annual tea fete. The older scholars assembled at the National School, and were formed in marching order, and headed by the National School Band, with a large number of flags and banners, proceeded to the Hall, and from thence to the new road near the Coffee Tavern, where they were joined by about 250 infants. They then marched to the Rectory Grounds, where tea was provided for them, and the infants marched back to the large hall, where they had their tea. The building had been very tastefully decorated, and a very interesting sight it was to see the little ones so happy. The tea was provided by Mr. and Mrs. Martin, the managers of the tavern, and they were assisted at the tables by Mrs. and Miss Wagstaff, Mrs. Pashler, the Misses Fisk, Finding, Day, and Lewis, and Mrs. Desborough. Mr. J. Claridge also rendered good service. The senior scholars and teachers had tea served in the Rectory Grounds, and among the company were the Rev. Canon, Mrs., and the Misses (3) Barker, the Revs. E. Templeman and L. Seeker, Mr., Mrs., and Miss Sartoris, Mrs. Craven, Mrs. Currie, Miss Arkwright, the Misses Taylor (2), Mrs. Misses Boodle (2).
After tea games were provided, and also a variety of sports, for which prizes were offered. The flags were distributed about the grounds, and together with the bright attire of the children and visitors produced a very pleasing scene. Several hundred parents and friends visited the grounds in addition to the 800 scholars who sat down to tea (600 having tea in the grounds and 200 infants in the hall). The number on the books, including the Sunday and day schools, is 690.
At seven o'clock the band called the company together to witness the distribution of the prizes by Mrs. Sartoris to those scholars in the day school who had made the highest number of attendances, all those who had made 400 and upwards receiving a prize. The prizes consisted of cricket bats, pocket knives, china ornaments, brackets, &c. The Canon, in introducing W. Cave, the first to receive a prize, urged upon the parents the necessity of sending the children regularly as he was sure if they did they would do well. This lad, he said, was a sample; he had attended 413 times, every time the school had been open, and he had passed in reading, writing, arithmetic, grammar, geography, and English literature. The following also received prizes:Mary Packwood, 400; Jesse Bird, 400; Walter Robinson, 407; W. Tassel, 400. Extra prizes in the first class: W. Cave, 395; B. Herbert, 386; H. Warren, 391. Special prizes were given the following for good attendance from a long distance, viz., from Irchester. The Canon remarked that those the farthest off often attended the best: John Austin, 340; A. Ward, 331; E. Mole, 329. Second class prizes for attendance: E. Whitbread, 409; E. Perkins, 409; W. Pettit, 408; extra, E. Berwick, T. Burfield, and F. Margetts for special good conduct. Third Class: L. Sears, 410; L. Childs, 400; extra, W. Gross, M. Warren. Fourth Class: A. Whitbread, 409; E. Cave, 406; R. Campion, 405; F. Perkins, 404; A. Packwood, H. Bollard; extras, E. Chettle, N. Warren, and M. Child. Half-timers: J. Clayton, M. Freeman, C. Campion. Infants: J. Campion, Brightwell, J. Compton, W. Cave, E. Robinson. In conclusion the Canon said the Committee did not give the prizes for their intrinsic value, but to show the value the managers set upon regular attendance. There were in the schools 251 infants, and 440 in the mixed school, making a total, including Sunday scholars, of 691. If they sent the children to school regularly they would be able to go to work sooner, as the regulations were now more stringent. No child would be allowed to go to work without a certificate, and to get a certificate they must pass the examinations, and to pass these they must attend regularly. Mr. Sartoris called for three hearty cheers for Mr. and Mrs. Barker and these having been given. Mr. Barker called for a like compliment to Mr. Warren, which was heartily responded to. Mr. Secker then called for cheers for Mr. Sartoris, and these were also given with enthusiasm.
Mr. Warren said much as he appreciated their thanks, the best way to give them would be to send the children regularly. On the average there were 140 absent every time the school was opened, and he asked how they could expect the scholars to pass the examination if 140 were away every time.
The company then returned to the sports, and the band played for dancing, which was freely indulged in until nine o'clock, when two fire balloons were sent on their aerial voyage, and the Band marched from the field.
The following ladies presided at the tables in the field: Mrs. Currie, Miss Warren, Miss Barker, Miss Mason, Miss Steele, Mrs. Packwood, Mrs. Ginns, Mrs. Lewis, Mrs. Skinner, Mrs. Wood, Miss Baker, Mrs. Jackson, Mrs. Sykes, Miss Smith, Mrs. Bird, Mrs. Clayton, Mrs. Rhodes, Mrs. Warren, Mrs. Perkins, Mrs. Woodward, Mrs. Whiting, Mrs. Carter, Mrs. Meadows, Mrs. Pashler, Mrs. Percival, Mrs. Childs, Mrs. Seckington, Mrs. G. H. Skinner, Mrs. Wills, and many more rendered valuable help, including the Sunday School teachers.
Appended is the awards of the judges (Messrs. J. Claridge and C. Wagstaff), Mr. Warren officiating as starter to the following programme of sports:
Boys: 100 yards flat race, for boys under 9, 6 yards allowed for each year under that age: 1 C. Ballard, 2 A. Packwood.
150 yards flat race, for boys over 9 and under 12 years: 1 F. Dickens, 2 R. Knight.
200 yards flat race, over 12 and under 15: 1 W. Burfield, 2 F. Denton.
Quarter mile flat race, open to all scholars: 1 W. Tassel; 2 J. Whitehead.
50 yards race on all fours: 1 J. Austin, 2 D. Hood.
100 yards three-legged race: 1 F. Denton and J. Austin.
High jump, 2 in. for each year: 1 T. Minney, 2 F. Denton.
100 yards mounted race: 1 W. Burfield and J. Warner, 2 H. Austin and C. Childs.
100 yards flat race backwards: 1 W. Bandy, 2 T. Warren.
Girls: 50 yards race, for girls under 9 years: 1 A. Whitehead, 2 E. Bull.
100 yards race, for girls under 12 years: 1 R. Whalley, 2 M. Packwood.
150 yards race, for girls under 16: 1 E. Mackness, 3 E. Houghton.
50 yards race, to be run backwards, 3 yards for each year: 1 A. Lewis, 2 A. Houghton.
Skipping match: 1 J. Bailey, 2 E. Perkins.
100 yards skipping match: 1 C. Campian, 2 J. Bailey.